Tennessee community and gun safety groups organize special legislative session activities – Tennessee Lookout

As the Tennessee General Assembly prepares to convene Monday for a special session dedicated to public safety — spurred by a mass shooting at Nashville’s Covenant School in March — community and faith groups have organized activities to call attention to gun safety.

Sunday, Aug. 20

Rise and Shine TN in partnership with Together Collective 

2 p.m., Legislative Plaza, 301 6th Ave., N., Nashville, TN 37243

  • Led by Nashville-based recording artist and Grammy nominee Ruby Amanfu and producer and songwriter Sam Ashworth, the event will feature children singing “This Little Light of Mine,” a performance by the Together Collective — a group of musical artists working to bring about positive change — and a non-partisan call from Amanfu and community activist Maryam Abolfazli to Tennessee lawmakers to protect children  from gun violence. 

Voice for a Safer Tennessee

6 p.m., St. Henry Catholic Church, 6401 Harding Pike, Nashville, TN 37205

  • Voices for a Safer Tennessee will hold a forum on “Faith, Firearms, and a Safer Community” in the church’s Fellowship Hall. Speakers include Fr. Mark Beckman, pastor of St. Henry Catholic Church; Dr. Allan Peetz, MD, FACS, Vanderbilt Surgical Sciences; Erin Rogue, senior policy advisor to former U.S. Sen. Bill First; and Torry Johnson, former District Attorney General for Metropolitan Nashville and Davidson County.

Monday, Aug. 21

Southern Christian Coalition 

8:30 a.m., Legislative Plaza, 301 6th Ave., N., Nashville, TN 37243

  • Faith leaders, including Rev. Rev. Ingrid McIntyre, Pastor of Glencliffe United Methodist Church, Chaplain Dahron Johnson, United Church of Christ, and Rev. Francisco Garcia, Priest at St. Augustine Chapel in Nashville will lead a prayer session. Participants plan to form a human chain around the Tennessee Capitol.

Moms Demand Action/Everytown for Gun Safety/Students Demand Action

11 a.m., Media Room, ground floor of the Cordell Hull Legislative Building ,425 Rep. John Lewis Way, Nashville TN, 37243

  • A group of mothers and students will hold a press conference to discuss what they term lawmakers’ inaction leading up to the special session.

Voices for a Safer Tennessee

Noon – 1:30 p.m., Belcourt Theater, 2102 Belcourt Ave, Nashville, TN 37212

  • The  nonpartisan organization dedicated to prioritizing firearm safety and promoting responsible firearm ownership through bipartisan legislation, is hosting an informational briefing on Monday, August 21, ahead of the Tennessee General Assembly convening for its special session on public safety later that day. Safer TN’s 20,000 coalition members have been invited to register to attend either in person or online to learn more about what to expect during the special session and how to get involved. 

The Equity Alliance, TIRRC Votes, Memphis for All, and others

Noon-2 p.m., First Baptist Church Capitol, 625 Rosa L Parks Blvd, Nashville, TN 37203

  • Together We March, Together We Rally: As the last day of The Equity Alliance’s Freedom Summer Tour, members of a  coalition including The Equity Alliance, the TIRRC Votes, Memphis For All, Moms Demand Action and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, will convene at First Baptist Church Capitol Hill — a center of the 1960s Civil Rights Movement — at noon before marching to the Legislative Plaza at 1 p.m. At 2 p.m., there will be rally with music and speakers on Legislative Plaza.

Tuesday, Aug. 22

African American Clergy Collective of Tennessee and the Interdenomination Ministers Fellowship 

1 p.m.,  Press Conference Room, ground floor of the Cordell Hull Legislative Building, 425 Rep. John Lewis Way, Nashville, TN, 37243

  • The groups will hold a press conference to amplify the need to address gun violence as a public health crisis.

Wednesday, Aug. 23


9 a.m. – Noon, 8th Floor, Cordell Hull Legislative Building, 425 Rep. John Lewis Way, Nashville, TN 37243

Advocates for Women and Kids’ Equality (AWAKE), a grassroots organization with a mission to advocate for the advancement of women and young people in Tennessee, will hold a Day on the Hill to talk with lawmakers about policy change.